Performers and Programs

Program Information

Program name: Bells & Motley Victorian Musical Celebration of Christmas Past
Program category: History
Performing Arts- Storytelling
Program length: 1 hour
Audience level: All ages
Audience size: flexible
Program description: Music and customs of a traditional Christmas of Dickens' time included jovial and ceremonial songs with choruses for all to share, ballads steeped history, costumed characters or 'guisers,' tableaux and games, dances, and the presence of holly, ivy, and evergreen. This musical voyage back to the spirit of Christmas Past offers a magical time for family and friends to gather and share the origins of our traditions. Across England, wealthy households would celebrate with great musical feasts and pageants, and folks would go from door to door, singing wassailing songs that ended with the request for 'a toast and a good loaf or cheese, and we’ll be on our way.' Featured will be wassail songs from Cornwall, Somerset, and Gloucestershire. Other traditions will include a special processional bagpipe air from Northumberland to 'pipe your bounds' to insure abundance and well being throughout the new year. This peek behind the history of Christmas celebration uncovers the universal within the season's mirth and merriment, and plants the seeds of ideas for reestablishing some of the old traditional elements for community celebrations - further enriching the meaning and majesty of this important holiday season.
Space/special requirements: Performers prefer natural acoustics; artists also have high quality sound available if required (audiences over 150, or special needs)
Travel restrictions: none
Program fee: $351- $500
Is this fee negotiable? Yes
Mileage included? No
If no, cost per mile: $0.56
Notes about the fee: No additional mileage charged within Onondaga County, or for block bookings; charge for travel from CNY. These fees are applicable for libraries and other intimate venues. Fees at larger venues and schools may be higher, please inquire. Grants are generally available, and we are pleased to assist.
Other notes: Please explore artists' website at for additional programs, exuberant recommendations, resources, and a wealth of information.
Regions this program
can be performed in:
South Central
Capital District
North Country
Long Island
Program last updated: 02/08/2014
Performer Information (see all of this performer's programs)
Stage name: Bells & Motley Olden Music, Dance, and Storytelling
Performer name: Sondra & John Bromka
Phone: 315-673-2995
Mailing address: 36 South Street
Marcellus, NY 13108
E-mail address:
Previous appearances at: 1) 35 Years at Sterling Renaissance Festival - presenting Concerts, Musical Theater, Storytelling, Historic Dance Instruction, 2) NYS Heritage and Canal Fest Events for Communities, Libraries, Schools across NYS, 3) School & Community residencies and pageants across NYS, Northeast, and Europe, 4) Historic Site thematic specialty programs for Lorenzo, Crailo, French Azilum, Sackets Harbor, Olana, many more; also France, Germany, & Belgium, 5) Libraries across all areas of NYS, and locally in Marcellus, Onondaga Hill; see our website for complete lists
Contact information for New York State Public Libraries
Performer information last updated: 06/07/2016


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